What is Smart Bidding?
Smart Bidding – A subset of automated bidding strategies that uses Google’s machine learning to optimize bidding in each and every auction. There are four smart bidding strategies: Target CPA, Target ROAS, Maximize Conversions, and Enhanced CPC.
It is a subset of automated bid strategies that use machine learning to optimize for conversions or conversion value in each and every auction—a feature known as “auction-time bidding”. Target CPA, Target ROAS, Maximize conversions, Maximize conversion value, and Enhanced CPC (ECPC) are all Smart Bidding strategies.
Before you begin
If you’re new to automated bidding in Google Ads, read About automated bidding first.
To use it, you need to have conversion tracking enabled unless you’re using ECPC with Display campaigns. Learn how to Set up conversion tracking.
Why use Smart Bidding Benefits
Advanced machine learning
In bidding, machine learning algorithms train on data at a vast scale to help you make more accurate predictions across your account about how different bid amounts might impact conversions or conversion value. These algorithms factor in a wider range of parameters that impact performance than a single person or team could compute.
Wide range of contextual signals
With auction-time bidding, you can factor in a wide range of signals into your bid optimizations. Signals are identifiable attributes about a person or their context at the time of a particular auction. This includes attributes like device and location, which are available as manual bid adjustments, plus additional signals and signal combinations exclusive to Smart Bidding. See a list of several of these important signals below.
Flexible performance controls
IT allows you to set performance targets and customize settings to your unique business goals:
- Optimize Search bids to your selected attribution model, including data-driven attribution.
- Set device-specific performance targets for mobile, desktop, and tablet with Target CPA bidding (coming soon).
Transparent performance reporting
Smart Bidding offers reporting tools that give you deeper insight into your bidding performance and help you quickly troubleshoot any issues. These include:
- Bid strategy reports that help you understand how your Smart Bidding strategies are performing.
Note: To locate your bid strategy report, go to find your bid strategy reports.
- Detailed bid strategy statuses that show you what’s going on under the hood of your bidding.
- Campaign drafts and experiments for Search and Display campaigns that make it easy to test how well Smart Bidding performs against your current bidding method.
- Simulators that forecast the number of conversions your ads might have received if you had set different CPA targets.
- Alerts and notifications that flag issues with conversion tracking and provide clear steps for fixing them.
Who it’s for
Smart Bidding works successfully for businesses large and small. Smart bidding can optimize based on data from all of your campaigns, so even new campaigns without data of their own may see increased performance. To evaluate results accurately, we recommend measuring performance over longer time periods that have at least 30 conversions, such as a month or longer (50 conversions for Target ROAS). Relevant keywords can be added to low volume campaigns to expand targeting and increase conversions.
Advertisers that are using Smart Bidding must comply with applicable legal requirements and Google ads policies. For example, you are responsible for ensuring that your use of Smart Bidding complies with Google’s personalized advertising policies. It’s important that you familiarize yourself with the contextual signals that are used in Smart Bidding so that you can determine whether Smart Bidding is appropriate for your business.
Video ad conversion attribution for Smart Bidding
For video ads using Smart Bidding, Google Ads uses conversion data from your campaigns to predict how likely it is an engagement with your video ad will lead to a conversion.
Engagements for TrueView for action ads are defined as clicks on the ad or 10 seconds of viewing time. If both happen, only the click is counted. Viewing at least 10 seconds of a video ad counts as leading to a website conversion if the conversion happens within 3 days of the engagement. For users who click on your ad, conversions will still be attributed to your current conversion window.
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